Welcome back pr students! The PRSSA presidency has changed a little bit since we met last, but the rookie and veteran executive members are excited for the opportunity to serve you—the pr aficionados of UVU.

As a presidency, we want to recognize and commend the many intelligent and hardworking students on campus that dedicate their time and talents to make PRSSA an enjoyable learning experience for everyone. Let it be known that your regular participation in events and activities is always appreciated, and never goes unnoticed.  We encourage you to remain active in PRSSA this coming semester, and in turn we promise to hold events that will help you become outstanding pr professionals as you prepare to enter the work force in the near future. To kick off the new year, we’d like to share a little piece of advice that just might enlighten all you future pr professionals.

In the middle of a discussion about the evolution of marketing and pr, a business executive for Prosper Inc.  exclaimed—“PR doesn’t stand for public relations anymore, it stands for personal relationships.” The heart of this statement aligns with everything we learn as students of public relations.  We may not know what goals or objectives our future employers will set, but we do know that everything we do as professionals should help build strong relationships with our key publics. While engaging in this process of relationship building, keep in mind that it should not be done superficially. Connecting with a key public is not about a sale, it’s about learning what makes a public tick and meeting their needs through exceptional communication efforts.  Our job is to build mutually beneficial relationships with specific publics, and we need to know about people to accomplish that task.

We’re sure this semester will be busy for each of you, but please take our challenge to practice good relationship-building habits now.  Seek to secure an internship or volunteer to do pr for a non-profit if you’re seeking an avenue to sharpen your skills and build your value as a future employee. Remember, as pr consultants we’re in the people business first, and everything else comes second.